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Fewer Indians falling prey to tech support scams in 2018: Microsoft survey

Fewer Indians falling prey to tech support scams in 2018: Microsoft survey
Photo Credit: Reuters

A study by technology firm Microsoft revealed that 68% of the people surveyed in India this year experienced tech support scams compared with 80% in 2016.

New Zealanders were the most targeted this year, according to the survey, which did not come out in 2017.

A technical support scam is often a call in which scammers use scare tactics to trick the person into paying for unnecessary technical support services. 

"These scams are evolving from cold calls to fake online pop-up ads and fraudulent websites – and affect everyone, even savvy online users.

Additionally, the cost of these scams goes beyond monetary loss, with people reporting higher stress levels after dealing with this type of fraud," said the survey.

Eighty four per cent of people surveyed in India this year experienced severe or moderate stress after getting scammed. 

About 14% of the Indians surveyed lost money to such scams in 2018 compared with 22% in 2016, the survey showed.

Microsoft conducted the survey on 16,048 internet adult users (equally divided between women and men) in 16 countries (1,000 per nation).

Microsoft’s digital crimes unit has been working to combat this type of global cybercrime by using a data-driven approach to investigate tech support fraud networks and refer cases to law enforcement. It is also strengthening its products and services to better protect consumers.

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